ADDING CLASSICS TO YOUR LIFE

By Steve Rogers, Editor

Music is an influence in our lives, and I greatly appreciate the diversity of styles and artists performing today.

While I recall when many people wanted to download huge quantities of music and movies for free, I was always content to buy one song or album at a time from iTunes. Now I have a sizable collection that ranges from Apocalyptica to The Beatles to Yo Yo Ma.

Up front, the music on my no-fly list currently includes 95 percent of rap music. Don’t take me there, but if the artist cannot sing a compelling note, you won’t impress me. Beyond that, rock, jazz, country, pop, audiobooks, acapella, rockabilly, new age, classical, Cuban, Latin, soul, dance, reggae, Christian/gospel, blues and much more appeal to me.

I realize also that what I consider a classic may be crap to you. So listen carefully and critically with your ears, not mine.

The artists and albums I suggest are red hot to me because I grew up devouring music as a youth, including:

  • Soaking in every LP my dad played like: “Downtown” by Petula Clark
  • Every song on the radio like “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” by Elton John and Kiki Dee
  • Every album my brother manage to play on dad’s stereo when no one was around like Wings Over America by Paul McCartney and Wings.

Hold your nose and open your ears. Image the best of these famed artists. And if you don’t know their best music, let me introduce them to you. For we all need inspiring music, original lyrics. Music is really about your heart, your hopes, your faith and your loves in this life.

  1. The ultimate cellist on Earth is Yo-Yo Ma. His work in “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” mesmerized me some 16 years ago. No one plays with with such passion and precision. He plays classical music, but his creativity rises to the top on soundtracks. I was particularly pulled into his music when he teamed with famed composer Ennio Morricone to re-create the music from, among others, a spaghetti (Italian) western film featuring a young Clint Eastwood. Yes, I am referring to the 3+ hours of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, which features perhaps the best soundtrack ever by a western film.

    “JORGE HARADA…PLAYS LIKE ONLY ONE OTHER LEGEND HAS — AND THAT WAS STEVIE RAY VAUGHN.”

    Jorge-032013-05web (1)
    JORGE HARADA, 6-string Samurai

  2. My favorite guitarist today may not be on your list of standouts, but he is an old friend of many talents. He may not be the biggest man on stage among all-stars, but Jorge Harada of Ruby Dee and The Snakehandlers plays like only one other legend has — and that was Stevie Ray Vaughn. Jorge is a master guitarist and brings Stevie Ray back to the stage for me. He gives the reins to lead singer Ruby Dee on most nights because she commands the stage so well. But when Jorge steps up for a solo on their original compositions, each note strikes your heart and soul. Rockabilly is the band’s music genre, but this Austin-based band travels internationally because so many people love their music. Try their live album from Austin to get a feel for this band. The band is currently touring in Europe and killing it. Play one for me tonight, Jorge. The six-string Samurai can be visited at JorgeHarada.com, and the band’s website is RubyDeeMusic.com.
  3. On the country front, I’m still hooked on the young tenor Josh Turner. His hits range from “Long Black Train” to “Firecracker” to “Why Don’t We Just Dance.” And Josh’s voice reveals a deep tone that is nearly unmatched in the country music genre right now. This guy has a supremely bright future.
  4. For now, I will leave you with a young artist who was murdered after her concert on June 10, 2016. Christina Grimmie was only 22 when she passed, but her connections with Adam Levine, Selena Gomez and more than a million fans since her introduction to the music world in 2009 are eternal. She also starred in an endearing movie, The Matchbreaker. She finished third on The Voice in 2014, and that kicked off her tremendous growth. What allowed Christina to capture the hearts of millions was her thankful, sincere personality and her powerful, pure voice. While Christina released only a handful of albums and one movie, she and her family continue to change lives for the better with the Christina Grimmie Foundation. Donations and purchases can be made at ChristinaGrimmie.com.

More award-winning music later. Contact my friend Terry at UDPhotos@gmail.com when you are planning big events in your life. He has an amazing history as a photographer, and now he has new equipment too.

Make today legendary, friends!

FUN-AND-GAMES THERAPY

Suffering from depression or just the blahs of life? We all have moments when life appears to let us down, taking all hope away.

Breakups, divorces, deaths and more tragedy occurs. I have recently lost my mother and father. Despite initial dejection and some mourning, I found a way to bounce back stronger than ever from life’s letdowns. And today I have become happier, healthier and more content with life. 

How? I have tried many methods to contentment and bliss with some success, possibly because I was a happy, fun kid. But the deep-down, soulful happiness that everyone sees because it pours out of you was more difficult to obtain. Still I knew friends like this, and I had the choice to conclude they were either; A-Fake; or B-A source of inspiration.

While analytical at times, I rode my faith and chose option B, which proved to be a good first step toward toward positivity. I discovered over time that positive self-talk — that is, the discussions we have with ourselves — in good times and bad is a primary strategy to overcome any hurdle in life. 

Acclaimed therapist Marisa Peer is renowned for solving major issues for people after their doctors have determined they to be long-term patients whose issue cannot be resolved without years of additional appointments. Having met Marisa in Spain in June, I can confirm that is an amazingly intelligent and one of the world’s best therapists. Additionally Britain’s top therapist is well known as a trendsetter among therapists because she can often resolve long-treated issues within 60 minutes and has helped women become pregnant after their doctors told them they could never have a child.

Marisa ranks as one who does not mince words. When speaking one-on-one in Barcelona, she focused completely on each person in front of her and helped them promptly when asked. Instead of asking you to talk about your childhood, family and troubles for months as a standard therapist or counselor might, Marisa assesses and then solves situations with astounding efficiency.

She has inspired my progress in life, and I place her on a special list I categorize as “angels” to many of us who have met her, watched her mind-blowing video “The Biggest Disease Affecting Humanity: I Am Not Enough” on YouTube or read any of Marisa’s practical books. 

Beyond focusing on finding a positive attribute to everything in my life (a rain day helps plants, trees grow tall, for example), I resolved to become content where I am at the moment. Not an easy task, but I know it’s important not to envy everyone else’s life and hate your own environment. 

Now these two key elements are not and never will be easy as you start. I struggled with stating what I wanted in my life and with smiling at my own situation, despite my background in psychology. I believe all of us have a test to take every week that is part of earning a Master’s in Maturity. Fail the test in front of you today, and the same test will arrive on your plate again next week.

That outlook helped me enormously to review my mistakes, personal weaknesses and to tackle those weaknesses as a priority. Step three in solving problems in this life is to take a self inventory and know yourself in every detail.

Know your strengths, weaknesses and what ruins your day, as well as what makes you angry. With that information, you can begin to avoid moments that you lose control. For me a knee injury gave me the focus I needed to direct my focus on making my biggest weaknesses into my greatest strengths. After four years of self-directed physical therapy, I have strengthened my knees to a point I can now walk, jog and even run a 5K race and still have energy left.

Start with these proactive steps, and you will begin to see that everyone can improve their outlook and their life in general. As you will see, you and I often determine our own destination in life by how we think subconsciously and therefore consciously. Improve one area, and you will improve all areas of life.

More steps on the way in future blogs here at 3FORADIME.WORDPRESS.COM 

 

WIM HOF: GET FROZEN

Wim Hof is slowly becoming a household name because he defies science and medicine.

If you are not familiar with Wim, you are not alone. Two weeks ago, I had only a surface knowledge of this European wildcat known as a stuntman who can endure tremendous cold. He is a world record holder and best known as “The Iceman.”

Two weeks ago, I listened to Wim speak in Spain at a 3-day conference hosted by Mindvalley, which also included hypnotherapist Marisa Peer and author Vishen Lakhiani to speak. Each made a profound appearance before hundreds of international go-getters in attendance.

For more information on Wim’s life, check YouTube.com. His Ted.com talks and footage of Wim’s climb of Mount Everest in short and barefoot are available if you suspect such achievements are BS. Wim also has run races barefoot above the Artic Circle and come away with no known frostbite. 

Scientists have attached all kinds of equipment to him and determined by Wim does indeed control his body temperature by will. And studies now reveal that Wim’s techniques of breathing and exposure to cold environments — think cold showers, guys — will dramatically improve anyone’s ability to do the same.

Wim has proven that was thought uncontrollable by the conscious mind is now a new universe that Wim Hof controls and explains to the world. 

His secret weapon? Wim mentally adjust his body temperature up to counter the ice and freezing water. Effectively through breathing techiniques, cold showers and regular training in frigid environments, Wim has altered what science long believed cannot be controlled voluntarily — the autonomic nervous system. He regularly states he enjoys ice and needs exposure to it on a regular basis.

More soon…

TOP 10 MOMENTS IN SPAIN

On UDPhotos.com’s first trip to Spain, we came home salivating from the cuisine, as well as the adrenaline rush of this special week that included amazing tourist adventures, rare meetings with world changers and world-class service. Many thanks to Mind Valley for hosting this event and to Marisa Peer for being the first to invite us to join this historic annual journey.


Here are UDPhotos.com’s TOP 10 MOMENTS IN SPAIN (and unedited images for effect):

See additional images and blogs here, at UDPhotos.com.

10. Meeting 26-time world-record holder and endurance/pain specialist Wim Hof. This man has lived a life of challenging the limitations of human capacity. He currently baffles science and laughs about it. So refreshing to here is honesty on stage. If he visits your area, take the time to meet Wim. He is a special combination between a Guiness World Record live demonstration and a visit to the Improv!

9. The varied architecture, historic buildings and castles around Barcelona are too numerous to count. But adventure hunters are invited to chase them all down, including the Gaudi masterpieces. Feel free to start and finish The Magic Fountain in Montjüic where the nightly water fountain show borders on surreal. It was created for the 1929 International Exposition by famed engineer Carles Buigas.

8. Checking out the 3-story, marble Apple Store in Barcelona was a kick. Apple architects are always sharpening their store appearances. In this rendition, the glass/marble look (maybe its plexiglass and PVC, but it looked great) keeps visitors engaged.


7. The sculptures and water fountains in Barcelona are among the best the UDPhotos team has ever witnessed. Dancing waves that change color in perfect sequence often attracts crowds in the thousands. When you visit, don’t miss these highlights.

6. The beaches of Barcelona bring to mind the mellow atmosphere and physically-fit nature of a Southern California beach. Volleyball, biking, roller blading, running and fit bodies of all ages were plentiful. The water was clear although as loaded with Atlantic Ocean saltwater. The beach sand was a little coarse, but easy to enjoy. Also the beach we visited was clothing optional. 

5. Meal to Live For: The cuisine in Spain is flavorful and diverse. We stayed at a Crown Plaza Hotel, which hosted the event and included two restaurants: A bar and a full restaurant we could not seem to coordinate schedules with. On our final night, we enjoyed a 5-star dinner highlighted by beef tenderloined cooked in salt.

4. Main Meal to Live For: We joined about 25 other people at a dinner at a special location on Saturday night after listening to Marisa Peer talk. At the restaurant, we were exposed to a variety of Spanish delicacies like baby octupus, but the main course of beef was so flavorful and tender, it left most of us speechless. And that is a rare quality for a roomful of ambitious leaders! Best food we found in Barcelona, and we logged numerous Top 20 dining experiences this time.;

3. After watching dozens of Vishen Lakhiani videos on YouTube.com, I was searching for an opportunity to see him in person, and this trip brought three of my favorite speakers together at one time. Vishen founded Mind Valley (MindValley.com) several years ago and has partnered with numerous of the world’s elite personal improvement speakers. His book, The Code of the Extraordinary Mind, is an eye-opener to the way most of us were taught when we were younger. On stage as in his book, Vishen cites research and facts while challenging everyone to test the rules they live by daily, which may be holding them back.


2. Famous hyponotherapist Marisa Peer (MarisaPeer.com) made me an offer I simply could not refuse. Having seriously considered flying to England to train with her in recent months, her invitation email regarding the Barcelona MindValley.com event arrived at a key moment. And we enjoyed the opportunity to eat a meal and ask for personal advice from Marisa. Marisa has been a counseling sensation for years for her Rapid Transformational Therapy (RTT) method, which she has used on television programs to solve serious problems in rapid fire for celebrities. Marisa is a trendsetter in her industry and the author of numerous books, including the best seller Ultimate Confidence. She holds the key to happiness for millions of us.

1. The spontaneous conversation my wife and I had in March as this trip originated with the announcement of a rare live convergence of authors and speakers at the very top of my must-see list. Marisa Peer’s signup email arrived, announcing a 3-day event only in Barcelona, Spain in June. I called Suzie and asked if she wanted to go to Europe for the first time for an early anniversary trip. Fortunately she said yes.

DESTINY AWAITS

(A present-tense tale from June 22). 

Today we soar above eagles, hawks and giants. Though frightened, we step onto the cloudtops as if propelled by God’s right hand. It is not a smooth journey as our chariot rides the rickety rails toward heaven’s destination.

Today we walk on the wings of Cindy, June’s tropical storm that washed the Gulf Coast clean. The shades of gray range from drab only to dull near the terrain. Sunny days are not the norm until you clear the storm horizon. However later today we will touch down where Blue Jays play, where winter dominates and where french lessons are free.

But tonight’s slumber takes us on a magical mystery tour beyond the Fab Four, beyond the channel and south of the tower. From this aerial arc against the clock, we will settle near a perfect sunrise on the shores of the great sea that touches the founding countries so often discussed in history books: Egypt and Italy.

As I spy Evansville, Bloomington and brickyard, my heart flashes to a fallen family member who was in many ways my twin cousin. Victoria and I were nearly the same age and shared amazing summers together with my brothers and her sister. Despite a variety of ages, Victoria and I, the youngest pups of our generation, blended well with the teens and their troubles. 

Because of our parents and grandparents in nearby Richmond, Indiana, our generation thrived on outdoor events, including family baseball, tennis, golf, hide-and-seek and the famous strawberry picking expedition that Aunt Mert organized for us. Among those I love dearly in the Samuels family, Aunt Mert holds a special place because of her selfless attitude and consistent generousity.

My love for Gordon, Mert and their wonderous daughters, Susie and Victoria, may never bring back the loss of my twin. But love continues to pour out to them because of the love and quality they have displayed in good times and bad. Victoria’s unexpected death on Aug. 3, 2014, broke my heart and left my soul crying for months. She remains a Samuels legend who will be praised and missed forever. 

My apologies for not being in your daily life at that time, Vickie. I so wish I could have given you the missing ingredient to win that day. In my mind, you and our grandmother Lucille Samuels held many common characteristics, including a boldness, inner strength and massive skill set. Your spirit lives on in your outstanding sister, Susie, and many others in our family. They now pursue goals with you in mind. May they be blessed and reach their goals and dreams.

———————–

After this, our rocket ship continued northeast over the scrappy towns of Marion, Anderson and Muncie, all of which hold stature in the lore of Indiana history. Muncie Central High School has been a powerhouse athletic program and probably won more basketball championships than any other school in the Hoosier state.

Marion is rumored to the sacred site when this tiny farm town defeated Muncie Central and many larger basketball powers some 60+ years ago in a tale that eventually became the movie Hoosiers. And Anderson is famous not for its roundball footnotes, but for the birth of my brother.

But it is the home of the Red Devils that calls me home, and I will return soon to share my love and hope with the great elders who settled along Route 66 and farther east to Dayton. Though this industrial town calls me home, I must resist for now to chase Spain’s golden legacy.

By late afternoon, Blue Jay country reigns me in as we refuel for an overnight puddle jump. The maple capital regales us with superb culinary samples, delivered in a crowded box unable to contain my traveling co-horts. A new friend from Alabama gladly how his home in Huntsville had grown into another Silicon Valley, thanks to NASA and its enormous contractor base.

The night was spent spiraling ng into dusk and midnight’s darkest hour over the Atlantic fishery. Six hours of cruising toward a single goal despite the formless waves and islands. By dawn’s birth, french vineyards gave testimony to another productive season. The oranges and yellows of the day’s stunning arrival shocks the sleepy-eyed laggard lumbering through the night unprepared for the dawn’s knock.

Finally Spain’s homeland comes into view, and we set our sights near the Mediterranean coast and the history built of stone architectural masterpieces dating to the birth of Jesus Christ. With a kick of the gear and a call to idle the engine after nearly 7.5 hours of cutting a hole at 32,000 feet, we step on terra firma once more, eager to start the journey of life, death and flight.

And we completed day one with a step onto Barcelona’s precision soil, home to soccer legend Lionel Messi, history and the home of grand, new type of education founded this year. More on that soon.

2017 BEATLES REUNION WITH A SGT.

In June 1967, The Beatles already owned rock music and had captivated the ears and hearts of millions.

Of the four tremendous musicians in The Beatles, Paul McCartney and John Lennon had already penned more than 100 original songs to establish the Lennon-McCartney byline as the most successful singer-songwriter combination. The Beatles broke sales records, attendance records and dominated the scene even before appearing in America in February 1964.

But what the quartet released to the public in 1967 is still regarded by many as the ultimate musical album of all time. It further scared and perhaps scarred adults raised on Jimmy Dorsey and Frank Sinatra. After all, rock-n-roll was not accepted by the majority of those age 30+ at the time.

However the release on June 1, 1967 of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band altered the scene for musicians, fans, haters/doubters and lovers of swing music. This new theme album changed the music world and inspired greatness from future legendary artists like The Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), Heart, Tom Petty and many others.

Led by Jeff Lynne, ELO released albums blending entire orchestras and classic rock guitars and drums. After The Beatle breakup, ELO became the one of a handful of rock groups that successfully created complex compositions involving string sections and a rock-n-roll beat.

Sgt. Pepper also influenced the legends of the day, pushing them to reach for greater heights in writing and performances. The Beach Boys, The Who, even Elvis, responded to the album that Sgt. Pepper and the boys used set a gold standard some 50 years ago today.

While many award-winning albums have arrived since then, listening to Sgt. Pepper again brings back smile as the album tells a connected story from one song to the next. It was a rare commodity then, and it remains the most challenging feat for a singer/songwriter to execute today.

Another key element to Sgt. Pepper that separated it from the hundreds of quality musical groups in the 1960s was the use of a vast series of instruments from around the globe. George Harrison had brought in sounds from Asia that America and probably European audiences were unfamiliar with.

The diverse, eclectic yet grand orchestration of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band can also be attributed to the grand master producer himself, the fifth Beatle, George Martin. Martin helped these four musical maestros present each song to its full impact, and Martin came from a classical music background.

His contribution earned him many titles and honors, but when Paul McCartney called Martin “a second father,” well, that is about as good as it gets in the music business. Martin was in the right place at the right time and signed the boys when other companies would not.

The rest was collaboration — and musical history that still rings true today.

 

 

THE PETE ROSE HUSTLE

By Terry Carter, Editor

Of the many, many Major League Baseball players in history, are you the all-time hits leader?  If so, you would be the rarest of the rare ball players, able to hit for average, score runs, hit under pressure and lead a great team to multiple world championships.

Pete Rose is that man. Yet he is allegedly banned for life from entering the MLB Hall of Fame because Rose gambled on the game he played. That ban happened decades ago, and it’s safe to say fans are aware of MLB All-Stars who are in the Hall of Fame despite worse moral and ethical issues involving their careers. Clearly Pete Rose is not a bad man compared to several Hall of Fame baseball players voted in.

But the ban continues to run its course. In my opinion and that of many others, Pete Rose has earned his place in the Major League Hall of Fame. His statistics are unmatched by any hitter of the baseball. He finished with 4,256 hits, including a career .303 batting average, an MVP award in 1973, World Champions with the Cincinnati Reds in 1975, 1976, the most singles all-time and the second-most doubles. Not bad for a slow switch-hitter.


While Major League Baseball cannot seems to recognize the life and times of Peter Edward Rose Sr., others have found a way to honor him. Recently the Cincinnati Reds inducted Rose and others into the Reds Hall of Fame. It was a multi-day event for fans, Rose and the team, worthy of the national parades The Big Red Machine team members received in the 1970s. Hall of Famers like Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan and stellar players like Ken Griffey, Tony Perez, Cesar Geronimo, Dave Concepcion, George Foster and Rose. 

I cannot say that Rose was better than Bench – voted the Best Catcher of the 20th Century – and Morgan – a speedy, do-it-all second baseman. But Rose was undoubtedly the best contact hitter ever to play the game. That trio won back-to-back World Championships on a team that was weakest in pitching of all things. 

To the MLB officials and commissioner, Rose belongs in the hall. Cincinnati did its best to honor the all-time hit leader. Now get off your butt, read Sports Illustrated, the WSJ and other views on this issue – and get Pete Rose on the ballot where he belongs. Politics is not your forté, commissioner.

I watched many Reds games during their championship seasons. I admired Bench and became a catcher with power and a strong arm like the great Johnny Bench — though never played at that level. I respected Joe Morgan who flapped his wing while hitting, stole bases and turned singles into doubles, scored runs and created rallies regularly.

But as much as that, I learned the most by watching Pete Rose always battle great pitchers, waiting for the right pitch and rifling a single or double. He ran to first base even when he received a walk, earning the title “Charlie Hustle” back in the 1960s. What Pete Rose could do was change the momentum of any contest with his energy. His timely hits won games. His attitude intimidated foes, especially a Met named Bud Harrelson. 

The game of baseball belongs to all of us as fans. And we want Pete Rose in the MLB Hall of Fame.